Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sydney Metro Website Still Available Online

Media reports indicate concern that the website of the abolished Sydney Metro Authority is no longer publicly available. However, it has been cached by Google (3 Feb 2010 01:06:28 GMT).

I suggest the NSW government adopt the practice of some federal departments and retain such web pages at their original address, but add a header to indicate the material was no longer current. This practice was adopted when there was the first change of government after adoption of the web by government (I recall the interdepartmental meeting where it was discussed). This practice is also followed by some US federal and state agencies.

Also the National Library of Australia might like to put a copy in their Pandora Archive.

Obviously details of a failed project which wasted hundreds of millions of dollars is an embarrassment to the NSW government, but attempting to suppress the information is unlikely to improve the situation.

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Monday, February 22, 2010

Sydney Metropolitan Transport Plan

The NSW Premier, Kristina Keneally, yesterday released a Metropolitan Transport Plan. This is in line with my submission on the Sydney CBD Metro. The new strategy abandons the plan for an automated underground Metro by the previous NSW Premier and the highly centralised CBD land use plan it implied. The reinstated older plan is for heavy surface railways between several economic centres and the use of freeways, supplemented by light rail and bus-ways for the urban areas between them. This new (old) plan reinstates the "Cities of Cities" plan and the North West Rail link.

This is an improvement on the Metro plan which was unworkable, but places too much emphasis on the use of private cars for transport. The NSW government needs to accept that there must be large investment in public transport and that building roads is no solution. However, the major problem is not with the new plan, but with the lack of credibility the NSW government has in implementing any transport plan, having changed plans, and Premiers, several times in the last few years.

The plan makes mention of the use of ICT for transport in using GPS for prioritise traffic lights for buses and in integrated ticketing systems. However, more use of ICT could make the new plan more workable. As an example, ICT can be used to provide the commuter with better information about services.

Available are:
  1. Transport Plan for Sydney, Media Release, Premier Kristina Keneally, (65 Kbytes PDF), attributed to Walter Secord, 21 February 2010.
  2. Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities, (19 Mbytes, 48 Pages, PDF), 21 February, 2010
  3. $6.7 billion North West Rail Link, Media Release, Premier Kristina Keneally,(42 kbytes PDF), 21 February, 2010
  4. New $4.53 billion Western Express CityRail Service, Media Release, Premier Kristina Keneally (59 Kbytes PDF), 21 February, 2010
  5. 1,000 new buses means more services and less cars on the road, Media Release, Premier Kristina Keneally (45 Kbytes PDF), 21 February, 2010
Minister for Transport AND Roads 4
Minister for Planning 4
Challenges and Vision 5
Meeting the demands of a growing city and a changing population
SYDNEY TO 2036 11
SYDNEY TO 2020 13
Where we are now 17
Integrating Transport and Land Use Planning
Our New Approach to Transport 23
and Land Use Planning
Supporting our Cities and Centres
Urban Renewal 26
We will grow the cities within Syd ney 27
The 10–year funding guarantee 28
Integrating Transport and Land Use Planning
New Express Rail Services for Western Syd ney 30
An expanded light rail network 32
Rail to match the demands of growth 34
Better Bus Connections 36
Getting Syd ney Moving 38
Syd ney’s Iconic Ferries 39
Increasing the efficiency of the road network 40
Key Freight Projects 41
A Better Customer Experience 42
Planning the Future Transport Network 43
Next Steps 44

From: Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities, (19 Mbytes, 48 Pages, PDF), 21 February, 2010

February 21, 2010
Premier Kristina Keneally today released the Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities.

It focuses on slashing travel times for western Sydney commuters, a North West rail link, an expansion of light rail, more commuter car parks, new ferries, air conditioned buses and trains.

It is a 25-year vision for land use planning for Sydney and a 10-year fully funded package of transport infrastructure for the Sydney metropolitan area and will deliver benefits for the Illawarra, Central Coast and Hunter.

Over 10 years, the plan comprises $50.2 billion in spending; of that, there is more than $7 billion in new or expanded transport infrastructure and services.

The plan is backed up by a 10-year funding guarantee and is consistent with maintaining the State’s AAA credit rating and delivering value for money for the NSW taxpayer.

This is the first time that land use and transport planning have been integrated into a single, funded plan.

Under the plan, Transport and Planning Ministers would jointly approve major transport infrastructure, ensuring Sydney’s transport needs are matched to growth. In addition, significant land use decisions will be made by both ministers.

Ms Keneally made the announcement following a specially convened State Cabinet meeting in Sydney today.

The NSW Cabinet decided to:
  • Stop work on the $5 billion Stage 1 CBD Metro;
  • Reallocate resources and funding to a range of other projects and transport plans over the next 10 years;
  • Move swiftly to support the tenderers for the major construction contracts affected by the decision to stop the CBD Metro – saying they would be reimbursed for reasonable costs incurred; and
  • Put processes in place to assist property owners and tenants who have incurred legal, valuation and other costs relating to property acquisition.
“We’ve listened to the community and made a tough decision,” Ms Keneally said.
“This is about re-allocating spending to where it is needed. Sydney is no longer one city.
“Sydney is a series of regional cities – Parramatta, Liverpool and Penrith – and accessible centres like Blacktown, Chatswood and Bondi Junction.
“This is about responding to the challenges of Sydney’s growing population.”
By 2036, Sydney is expected to grow by 1.7 million to a population of 5.98 million.
“The Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities is about getting people home from work as quick as possible. By 2016, 28 per cent of all trips to work will be taken by public transport.”
The Premier’s Plan – the Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities – includes:
  • The $4.5 billion Western Express CityRail Service – a separate dedicated rail track to slash travelling times from western Sydney to the city. It will achieve faster and more frequent services with a goal of up to 50 per cent more services and 17 per cent more passengers on the CityRail network on an average weekday. This will occur through:
    • o Separating a dedicated track from all other traffic;
    • o Construction of a new five kilometre priority tunnel –City Relief Line – will be built from 2015 in the city to separate western services from inner-city trains to provide shorter journey times;
    • o Construction of eight new platforms to increase capacity at Redfern, Central, Town Hall and Wynyard to relieve congestion;
    • o New express train services will be introduced for the Blue Mountains, Richmond, Penrith, Blacktown and Parramatta; and
    • o Increase CityRail’s capacity on all lines and allow the introduction of express rail services to western Sydney.
  • Start of work on the $6.7 billion North West rail link from Epping to Rouse Hill with six stations at Franklin Road, Castle Hill, Hills Centre, Norwest, Burns Road and Rouse Hill in 2017;
  • A $500 million expansion of the current light rail system – bringing its total length to 16.9 kilometres with up to 20 new stations and almost 10 kilometres of new track – a more than doubling of the distance of the existing route. The $500 million comprises:
  • Road works and infrastructure;
  • 4.1 kilometres of light rail from Circular Quay via Barangaroo to Haymarket; and
  • 5.6 kilometres of light rail from Lilyfield to Dulwich Hill.
  • Improvements to bus services – costing $2.9 billion – which includes:
    • o Roll out of 1,000 new buses in Strategic Bus Corridors in Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong and the Central Coast;
    • o Bus priority measures such as GPS traffic light priority; and
    • o New STA and private bus depots.
    • Over the next 10 years, $3.1 billion for new trains and this is in addition to the 626 carriages on order;
  • Creation of the new Sydney Metropolitan Development Authority to drive future transit-oriented development and urban renewal. Authority will be similar to the highly successful Redfern Waterloo Authority and Barangaroo Delivery Authority. It will be responsible for implementing the integrated metropolitan land use strategy and will report to the Minister for Roads and Transport and the Minister for Planning with its own board with a Federal Government representative.);
  • A number of other transport related measures including:
  • o $158 million in cycleways – completing many of the city’s high priority missing links;
  • o More than $400 million in commuter car parks; and
  • o $57 million Commuter Infrastructure Fund for local transport partnerships – such as improved and easy access for people with disabilities and more awnings and shelters at rail stations;
  • $225 million over 10 years for Sydney ferries, including six vessels;
  • $536 million for motorway planning, transit corridor reservations and land acquisition for future projects;
  • $483 million from State and Federal Governments to deliver important freight works in Sydney, including a NSW Freight Plan to increase productivity and secure jobs;
  • State Government will continue to deliver $21.9 billion of joint State and Federal funded road projects; and
  • An historic partnership with the City of Sydney to develop a memorandum of understanding on public transport; movement on laneways and streets and planning issues such as pedestrian friendly areas and civic spaces.

  • To ensure that future State and Federal governments are still able to build high capacity public transport if and when they are needed, corridors and planning approvals will continue to be secured, such as metros.
    The Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities builds on the MyZone announcement on February 1.

    MyZone is a new fare structure and multi-modal system for greater Sydney to make using public transport fairer, simpler and cheaper. It is scheduled to commence on April 18.
    The new fare structure applies across the entire CityRail, State Transit, Sydney Ferries and private bus networks in the greater Sydney region, including the Blue Mountains, Southern Highlands, Illawarra, Central Coast and the Hunter.


    The NSW Government wants to know what the community thinks about the initiatives outlined in the Metropolitan Transport Plan: Connecting the City of Cities plan.
    The NSW Government will simultaneously undertake the first five year review of the Metropolitan Strategy.
    Submissions and comments can be lodged at:
    Once the review of both documents has been completed, all feedback will be consolidated into a Metropolitan Plan to link our transport and land use planning.

    From: Transport Plan for Sydney, Media Release, Premier Kristina Keneally, (65 Kbytes PDF), attributed to Walter Secord, 21 February 2010.

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    Tuesday, February 02, 2010

    Bus rapid transit for Sydney

    The NSW government is reported to be rethinking plans for the Sydney Metro. One option would be to expand the current Metrobus into a bus rapid transit system. This could use bi-articulated as now being trialled in Brisbane. This could also make use of the simplified MyZone system, announced recently.

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    Monday, February 01, 2010

    Sydney Metro Alternatives

    I still can't work out exactly what Sydney Metro's response to my submission (and others) on the Environmental Assessment and the Station Plans was, despite an email, with a letter they had already sent me (appended).

    The email did not say anything new, but on re-reading this I noticed mention of: "Table 5 in Appendix D for a reference list". It did not say what this was appendix D of, but I guessed it was "06 Submissions Report - Appendix D". On the last page of this document (page 28) I found a line in a table which said: 4.11
    4.16 2536 4.6. I assume this indicates that submission 2536 is covered by sections 4.6, 4.11 and 4.16 of the report. Why these details are listed in this order is not clear. This is about as easy as a numerological analysis of a biblical text. I was able to find "4.6 CBD Metro – the first stage", but the report does not appear to have a section 4.11 or 4.16, as it ends at 4.7.

    One interesting part of this document is the table which indicates that the most frequently raised issue is alternatives to the Metro.

    Table 2: Most frequently raised issues (unique submissions*)
    * Excluding government stakeholders
    1Alternatives to the metro project 4.6263
    2General business impacts (construction)4.64126
    3Project cost4.9120
    4Need for an integrated transport plan for Sydney4.11118
    5Justification for the project4.7117
    6Socio-economic issues at Rozelle4.6899
    7Project route and alignment4.1273
    8Metro network4.1072
    9Project design4.1770
    10Excessive noise and vibration4.4162

    Text of letter from Sydney metro:


    Level 19, 321 Kent Street, Sydney NSW 2000
    PO Box Q286, QVB Post Office NSW 1230
    T 02 8238 2700 F 02 8238 2797

    Mr Tom Worthington
    1 February 2010

    Submissions Report for Sydney Metro Network Stage 1 (Rozelle to Central)

    Dear Mr Worthington

    Thank you for your submission on the Environmental Assessment for Stage 1 of the Sydney Metro Network (Rozelle to Central).

    As part of the project assessment process, Sydney Metro has prepared a Submissions Report detailing the issues raised in submissions and our response to each issue.

    Your submission was registered as submission number 2536 and our response to the issues raised in your submission can be found in this report. (See Table 5 in Appendix D for a reference list.)

    The Submissions Report outlines some changes made to the project as a result of our consideration of the submissions received and additional design information. We have also updated our Statement of Commitments which includes a number of new initiatives, such as purchasing 100 per cent renewable energy to operate the metro.

    Sydney Metro has lodged the Submissions Report with the NSW Department of Planning for consideration as part of the project assessment process. The report is now available on the NSW Department of Planning website ( – go to the Major Project Register in the Development Assessments section of the website). A link to the Submissions Report is also available from the Sydney Metro website (

    Pending approval of the project, construction works are scheduled to start in mid 2010. We will continue to keep the public informed of progress through our website, community newsletters and media announcements.

    Please do not hesitate to call 1800 636 910 if you have any questions or need more information about the submissions process.

    We look forward to working with you to develop this essential public transport system for Sydney.

    Rodd Staples
    Acting Chief Executive

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    Sydney Metro Response to Submissions

    Last October I wrote a brief submission on the Environmental Assessment and the Station Plans for the proposed Sydney CBD Metro. Today I received a paper letter (dated 15 January 2010, but postmarked five days later on 20 January 2010). The letter says that a response to the issues I raised is in a "Submissions Report" available on the web, unfortunately I have not been able to find that response.

    The letter does not give the web address of the report. It gives the home page of the NSW Department of Planning and of Sydney Metro. I was unable to find the document navigating from these home pages. I tried telephoning Sydney Metro, but got an answering service, which took a message, but so far no one has rung back.

    Eventually I found a web page "Project Application - CBD Metro - Assessment" which has"Response to Submissions" which might be what the letter was referring to. However, that then links to ten PDF documents, the titles of which do not match those of the documents I was commenting on (Environmental Assessment and Station Plans). These documents are about 40 Mbytes in total. It is not reasonable to have to search through 4,000 pages of material looking for a response to my submission. It would be quite simple for Sydney Metro to electronically mark which bits of the report refer to specific submissions, or at least point to the most relevant section.

    I attempted to find mention of my submission by searching the documents using a web search, but was unable to find either my name, nor the reference number allocated to the submission: 2536.

    In its judgement "Muin v Refugee Review Tribunal; Lie v Refugee Review Tribunal" (8 August 2002) the High Court of Australia found that a government agency could not merely make "documents" available in a mass of undifferentiated material, it was necessary to provide some form of identification of the specific relevant material.

    In my view Sydney Metro has not provided a response to the submission, or to any submission, as there is no way to find references to submissions in the thousands of pages of material. Sydney Metro has therefore no complied with NSW planning law.

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    Monday, October 12, 2009

    Proposed Sydney CBD metro system

    This is for a submission on the Environmental Assessment and the Station Plans for the proposed Sydney CBD Metro. Comments are invited on this draft (to be finalised by close of business 12 October 2009). These comments are based on the documents provided on the NSW web site (I was unable to find the advertised display at the Leichhardt Library).

    The documents provided offer no alternatives to a metro and no overall transport plan for Sydney. As a result it is not feasible to assess the environmental or other value of the one option presented. Options which need to be considered are expansion of the heavy rail network, as Melbourne is doing with a detailed Victorian Transport Plan and light rail / guided buses in Adelaide.

    The introduction of new telecommunications, including the NBN, will reshape Australian cities. Transport plans need to take account of this. One priority should be an integrated ticket system for Sdyney, similar to the successful Akbil system in Istanbul.

    The availability of wireless telecommunications will also make older and slower transport options more viable, by providing services to commuters on route. As an example, the Cambridgeshire Guided Busway is being equipped with WiFi for passengers. Sydney's successful and popular MetroBus could be similarly equipped with WiFi and electronic signs.

    Metros are very expensive long term projects which, even when they start on time (whereas several previous Sydney Metros projects have not) can be decades late and many billions of dollars over budget. The metro under construction at the Greek city of Thessaloniki only 9.6 km long but has taken thirty years to build.

    Sydney needs to consider shorter term, lower cost projects which have a reasonable chance of success. The prime candidate for funding is the extension to the existing inner west Sydney Light Rail.

    NSW should put on hold the plans for a proposed Metro and start to undertake transport planning.

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    Thursday, April 09, 2009

    NSW Draft Centres Policy for Retail and Commercial Development

    As mentioned by Kristina Keneally, NSW Minister for Planning, last night, the NSW Government has today released a "Draft Centres Policy - Planning for Retail and Commercial Development", with a detailed document on Draft Centres Policy and Questions and Answers available.The policy is open for comment until 11 May 2009. At a quick glance the problem I can see with the policy is that it is concentrating on retail and commercial development, with little mention of community use.
    • Description: The Draft Centres Policy provides a planning framework for the development of new and existing retail and commercial centres in NSW. The policy is based on six principles:
      • Retail and commercial activity should be located in centres to ensure the most efficient use of transport and other infrastructure, proximity to labour markets, and to improve the amenity and liveability of those centres.
      • The planning system should be flexible enough to enable centres to grow, and new centres to form.
      • The market is best placed to determine the need for retail and commercial development. The role of the planning system is to regulate the location and scale of development to accommodate market demand.
      • The planning system should ensure that the supply of available floorspace always accommodates the market demand, to help facilitate new entrants into the market and promote competition.
      • The planning system should support a wide range of retail and commercial premises in all centres and should contribute to ensuring a competitive retail and commercial market.
      • Retail and commercial development should be well designed to ensure they contribute to the amenity, accessibility, urban context and sustainability of centres.

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    Wednesday, April 08, 2009

    NSW Land Planning and Sydney transport chaos

    Kristina Keneally MPGreetings from the Holme Building at the University of Sydney, where Kristina Keneally, NSW Minister for Planning, was due to talk at 6pm on "Planning in New South Wales - Responding to the Global Economic Crisis". Ironically the Minister has been held up by transport difficulties in the Sydney CBD, due to a protest.

    The minister was able to arrive at 6:20pm, only 20 minutes late. Craig Knowles, a former planning minister, did the introductions. The new minister started with a quip, saying she had been described as "Sartor in a frock". Her formal training was as a feminist theologian and has worked in the area of social justice. She argues that planning is about social justice, with parks and other facilities for people. Minister Keneally related how on a recent trip to New York the difference in ability for NSW to undertake projects such as the Redevelopment of Barangaroo.

    The Minister pointed out that the Government does not do everything. Housing construction is at historically low levels and was low even before the global financial crisis.

    The Minister's goal is to have the best planning system in Australia. Given the NSW government's poor planing in other areas, such as in announcing and then cancelling metros and is unable to ensure electricity supply in the Sydney CBD, that is a bold claim. However, in the area of housing planning, it would appear that streamlined planning processes imposed on local councils will speed up approvals significantly. The government has also reduced infrastructure levies on new development. As to if these are good for long term planing is debatable.

    A "centres policy" will be released for comment tomorrow. The minister commented that blogs might be used for future consultations online. The minister might like to consider using fast track web enhanced planning.

    The Minister listed a number of goals for shorter benchmarks and said the government had committed to publishing performance against the benchmarks. It is not clear if this is separate to the reports from the Auditor on Reporting of the State
    s Performance.

    The Minister commented that the federal government's stimulus package was a massive undertaking, with construction and upgrades for most schools and public housing in NSW. In some cases whole schools will have to be closed for building work and the students attend a nearby school. In regional areas the work on government and non-government schools will have to be coordinated so that all the schools in an area are not closed at the same time. Planning rules for non-government schools were streamlined last year so that routine upgrades can be approved quickly. This has now been extended to non-government schools.

    Government departments which build public housing will be able to self approve plans for public housing. This will eliminate months spent waiting for approval from local government. Departments will still need to meet standards for public housing.

    A quick rezoning process will also be put in place for development around major public transport nodes. This is to increase the density of development near public transport.

    A user guide about the new process will be available soon. This will explain how planning goals will be met by the new process, including environmental goals.

    The Minister compared the stimulus package with the World Youth Day, in that there are firm deadlines when the new procedures are required to be in place so the federal money can be received.

    The Minister commented that since the Cumberland Plan of the 1950s, centres planning has bedevilled planing ministers. This is because that new innovative proposals would not fit in the plans. A net community centres benefit test will be proposed for out of centre development. The new policy document will be released tomorrow afternoon, on the web for comment for four weeks.

    The last issue the Minister covered was Redevelopment of Barangaroo. The new Barangaroo Delivery Authority is overseeing the development, headed by a CEO with experience from the Melbourne Docklands. One challenge is to get many more people to travel to and from the new area by public transport. Another challenge is to set up an area for new offices of the future during a recession. Paul Keating chairs the public design review committee.

    The Minister finished talking at 7:20pm.

    The first question was about "zoning" and if it was a good idea. The comment was that a lot of the Minister's streamlining was about sidestepping the zoning, so why not eliminate it? The Minister acknowledged the difficulties with zoning and indicated support for councils which want flexibility.

    The second question was about integrating planning with whole of government and budget. The Minister did well to clarify an unclear question and commented on the difficulty of planning in a democracy and when conditions change.

    The next question was about the wisdom of moving the cruse ship terminal to Balmain. The Minister replied that the straightforward answer was that a 30m security exclusion zone was required around cruse ships. Also it would be difficult to provision ships at Barangaroo.

    I asked the Minister if she had yet considered how to incorporate the federal government's NBN policy in planning. She said they had started to consider this and is likely to involve some public consultation shortly.

    The Minister gave an impressive delivery with a lot of detail. It was unfortunate that the speech was not provided on the Minister's web site, with links to the many initiatives mentioned.

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    Thursday, April 02, 2009

    NSW Land Planning for the Global Economic Crisis

    Kristina Keneally MPKristina Keneally, NSW Minister for Planning, and Minister for Redfern Waterloo will talk on "Planning in New South Wales - Responding to the Global Economic Crisis" in the Sunset Seminar Series at the University of Sydney, 6.00 pm, 8 April 2009.
    As the global economic crisis begins to take effect in NSW, a key question on the minds of developers, planners and policy makers is what impact this will have on urban and regional development and planning policy.

    The Minister for Planning, the Hon. Kristina Keneally, will present an informative, no-nonsense, discussion on the State's responses, including Part 3A reforms to the planning and assessing regime and the short and long-term impacts this will have in speeding up of approval processes and in stimulating economic activity in NSW....

    From: "Planning in New South Wales - Responding to the Global Economic Crisis", Sunset Seminar Series, Faculty of Architecture, Design & Planning, University of Sydney, 2009

    I hope to attend the talk. One aspect of this is the role of new computer and telecommunications technology in speeding up of approval processes, as well as stimulating economic activity. The NSW government has encouraged local councils to move their planning processes online and, in theory, it would be possible to do all the "paperwork" needed for planning approval of a home from an iPhone while out on a building site.

    In terms of wider economic issues, use of computers and telecommunications can lower costs, while reducing carbon emissions, without needing large investments in new roads or public transport. This is called "dematerialisation" and I teach it in the course "Green ICT" run by the Australian Computer Society.

    An example of the use of ICT in planning is the use of electronic signs to make public transport more efficient. An example of this is the recently introduced Sydney MetroBus. A metro is a public transport system which is so frequent it does not need a time table. The term is usually applied to underground trains (such as the Sydney Metros which NSW state government keeps announcing and then cancelling). However it can also be applied to buses. One way to make the system more attractive is to provide electronic signs which say when the next bus will arrive. This was planned as part of the Sydney MetroBus, but has not been implemented. The information can also be provided via mobile phones. The electronic information increases the usability of the metro for very little additional cost.

    Another way to use ICT to improve transport use is to provide WiFi access, as on the Cambridgeshire Guided Busway. This will encourage travellers to undertake longer journeys, as they can do useful work, or entertain themselves, while travelling.

    The Green ICT course is designed for ICT professionals, but I hope to get planners involved. I will be delivering a version of the course next semester at ANU in Canberra, but the course is open access and universities could use it o train planners and architects.

    ps: I gave a seminar on ICT for planners from the "new" Bauhaus at the USyd Faculty of Architecture in 2002.

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    Tuesday, February 17, 2009

    Sydney CBD Metro

    The New South Wales Government has announced that work will commence on the $4.8B Sydney CBD metro. Unfortunately, as with previous metro proposals , this seems to be an ad-hoc one off proposal not part of a plan for Sydney.

    The NSW Government released "City of Cities: A Plan for Sydney's Future" in December 2005. It aimed to plan for a population increase of 1.1 million by 2030, balancing economic growth with social and environmental issues. Whatever the plan's flaws, it is better than no plan.

    The City of Cities plan included a $8B North West-CBD-South West Rail Link. There3 was no CBD Metro in the plan. However the Strategy for Transport included criteria to assess transport proposals: enhanced liveability, economic competitiveness, fairness, environmental protection and governance. These could be applied to the CBD Meto to see if it would be of value to Sydney. The metro announcement makes no mention of a long term large scale plan, only short term details:

    The 7km CBD Metro is the first step towards a metro rail network for Sydney. It will run underground from Central to Rozelle via Town Hall, Martin Place, Barangaroo/Wynyard and Pyrmont. A station will also be safeguarded for future development at White Bay.

    The route alignment is subject to further development and some modifications may occur as new information is obtained (particularly information related to major services and building basements).

    The platform depth at the stations will range from approximately 20 to 35 metres below street level. The tunnel depths will be further determined as the design progresses.

    Objectives of the route

    The proposed route has been selected based on the objectives listed below and in consideration of a number of significant constraints, particularly in the CBD.

    • Provide for stations to be built at optimal locations
    • Take account of operational requirements for customer experience and maintenance
    • Minimise impacts on future CBD developments by following road alignments as far as possible
    • Minimise impacts on existing structures and basements
    • Minimise impacts on existing underground infrastructure
    • Utilise the Interim Metropolitan Rail Expansion Pitt corridor through the CBD (as identified in the Infrastructure SEPP) as much as possible
    • Safeguard the Interim Metropolitan Rail Expansion West corridor through the CBD (as identified in the Infrastructure SEPP) and other underground infrastructure
    From: The Route, Sydney Metro, NSW Government, 2009

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    Wednesday, January 07, 2009

    Sydney CBD to Parramatta West Metro

    According to media leaks, joint state and federal government study has been conducted into a West Metro between the the Sydney CBD and Parramatta in western Sydney ("Get ready: high-rise suburbs coming", January 6, 2009 and "Subway a highway to high-rise hell, say opponents", January 7, 2009, by Linton Besser and Wendy Frew, Sydney Morning Herald). The West Metro, underneath Parramatta Road would cost $8.1 billion. Like the proposed and cancelled North-West metro, the scheme is not for a European style metro, but a heavy underground railway.

    The proposal appears far more feasible than previous abandoned Sydney railway plans. The planned stops at locations such as Leichhardt appear much better thought out than the previous metro (see map from Paramatta Council). The project would depend on funding from the Federal Government's Infrastructure Australia. The carefully worked out process IA has for selecting projects should help avoid the failures of previous NSW government rail and road projects.

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    Sunday, November 02, 2008

    Istanbul Kadiköy to Kartal Metro

    International Railway Journal's October edition features "Building Istanbul’s Kadiköy - Kartal Metro" as an online supplement. In May I saw the work under way from the window of the Thessaloniki to Istanbul Train. At the time I assumed this was some of the work for the Marmary Rail Tunnel, but it is work to link up other parts of Istanbul's public transport.

    The IRJ's articale is also interesting for the way it is provided as an online suppliment to the print jounal. The article is listed in the table of contents of the print edition, with a note saying "online edition". Presiumbly this is desinged to encourage people to read the online version. The online version is provided using Nxtbook Media, with Adobe Flash. This provides a facsimilie of the print edition, which is hard to use compared to ordinary web pages and which takes a long time to load on a slow Internet connection.

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